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08 Feb AIM Presents: Indie-Con 2018

We are pleased to announce the return of Indie-Con, AIM’s 1-day conference covering all areas of independent label business. Indie-Con returns to London’s Glaziers Hall on Thursday 8th February 2018, in association with Disc Manufacturing Services (DMS Vinyl). The event will take an in-depth look at all the key areas essential for running a successful independent music business, offering unrivalled networking and learning opportunities.

After an incredibly well-received sell out 2017 event which saw over 450 independent music professionals attend, Indie-Con 2018 will offer a unique programme of sessions aimed at helping independent artists and labels to grow their businesses and get their music heard. Indie-Con is the only conference in the UK to focus specifically on meeting the business needs of independent labels and self-releasing artists.

Indie-Con runs from 9am, – 5pm on 8th February at London’s Glaziers Hall, with an afterparty from 5.30-7.30pm at Omeara. Book your place today!


9 – 10am – Registration

9.50am – Welcome addresses (upstairs and downstairs halls)

10am – Album Release Campaign Case Study: Laura Marling ‘Semper Femina’ (UPSTAIRS HALL)
In March 2017 Laura Marling’s Grammy-nominated sixth studio album ‘Semper Femina’ was released through More Alarming Records via Kobalt Music Recordings. Management Abi Dawson (Everybody’s Management), Kobalt Music Recordings Product Manager Helen Barrass and General Manager Paul Trueman talk through the marketing campaign that saw the album hit the UK top 5 and achieve global success. Chaired by AIM CEO Paul Pacifico.

10am – Listeners to Fans, Fans to Super Fans (DOWNSTAIRS HALL)
What can labels and artists do to grab hold of passive listeners and turn them in to active fans? Looking at interesting marketing campaigns, the tools available to labels and the psychology of music fans. Speakers include: Jessie Scoullar (Wicksteed Works), Krish Thind (Nettwerk), Mike Hemsley (Pledge Music), Gabrielle Nicot-Berenger (Music Glue), Jennifer Metcalf (Because Music) and chair Mark Sutherland (Music Week).

10.50am – WIN Presents: How to Grow A Great Small Label in a Global Marketplace – Secret City Records case study (UPSTAIRS HALL)
Canadian independent label Secret City on how they globalised and took control of their digital business with spectacular results. Speaker: Justin West, Secret City Records, Interviewed by WIN CEO Alison Wenham.

10.50am – Plugging Away: How To Get Your Music Onto Radio & Playlists (DOWNSTAIRS HALL)
How is the radio landscape changing, and how can you approach key stations to get radio play for your artists? How are playlists compiled, and how do labels go about securing radio and streaming playlists spots? Speakers include: Jess Kangalee (Secretly Group), Gregory Wells (Plug Life), Jon Hillcock (BBC 6Music), Nikki Ellis (Hospital Records), Robert Cannell (Beggars Group) and chair Amy Collins (Your Army).

11.40am – Coffee break

12pm – Finding The Balance: Wellbeing & Mental Health in a 24/7 Music Business (UPSTAIRS HALL)
Working in music is more often a 24-7 lifestyle choice than a 9 to 5 job. Whether running an independent label, making a living as an artist, managing artists, producing records…it’s all too easy to push yourself to the limit and risk burn out. Our speakers talk through the best ways to achieve balance, prioritise wellness, manage time effectively and avoid the possible health pitfalls of a life in music. Speakers include: Fiona McGugan (MMF), Jeryl Wilton (Infectious PR), Clarisse Quinn (ATC Management), Sam Parker (Music Support), Rachel Jepson (Counselling for Musicians) and chair Nathan Barley Phillips (Basick Records).

12pm – Keynote: In Conversation with… Imogen Heap (DOWNSTAIRS HALL)
Artist in Residence at the Featured Artists Coalition, creative executive officer, founder of Mycelia and recording artist Imogen Heap talks about her many endeavours in music and technology with AIM CEO Paul Pacifico.

12.50 – 1pm – AIM Announcement (DOWNSTAIRS HALL)

1pm- 2.15pm – Lunch (complimentary hot buffet served)

2.15pm – Accessing the Australian and New Zealand Markets (UPSTAIRS HALL)
Learn first hand market information on Australia and New Zealand and how you can build an audience for your artists in these markets. The experts talk through the Australian and New Zealand markets and trends to be aware of to successfully grow your business, revenue and artists’ profiles in this region. Speakers include: Brooke Salisbury (Domino), Dylan Pellett (Independent Music New Zealand), Ellen Kirk (Barely Dressed Records), Merida Sussex (Stolen Recordings), Stu Watters (AIR/BIGSOUND/Nightlife Music), Martin Goldschmidt (Cooking Vinyl) and chair Dan Nevin (industry consultant).

2.15pm – What Can A Record Label Do For You in 2018? (DOWNSTAIRS HALL)
‘Artists don’t need labels anymore’ is a phrase commonly thrown around in the modern music industry, but can it be true? Independent labels discuss the value they bring to artists’ careers, how they stay relevant and how they’re adapting their deals and business models to attract artists in the new age. Speakers include: Emily Moxon (Brownswood Recordings), Nigel Adams (Full Time Hobby), Abdullah Al-Wali (Warp Records), Kate Hendry (Absolute Label Services), Matthew Rogers (Unified Music Group), Victor Zaraya (Razor & Tie), and chair Richard Burgess (A2IM).

3pm – Coffee break

3.15pm – Let’s Get Physical: Tapping Into The Vinyl Resurgence (UPSTAIRS HALL)
The resurging sales of physical formats has re-opened revenue streams for labels of all shapes and sizes. With vinyl sales at a 25 year high and cassette sales up 112% on last year, what are the best ways for labels and artists to tap in to the growing world of physical music? Speakers include: Sam Reynolds (DMS Vinyl), Kim Bayley (Entertainment Retailers Association), Craig Evans (Flying Vinyl), Siofra McComb (!K7 Records), Kees Van Weijen (Impala) and chair Martin Talbot (The Official Charts Company).

3.15pm – Artists Roundtable: How We’re Achieving Independent Success (DOWNSTAIRS HALL)
A panel of independent artists discuss their careers, their chosen routes to market, their biggest challenges, how they connect with their fans and their thoughts on developing revenue streams and new technologies.  Featuring artists J. Willgoose Esq (Public Service Broadcasting), Emmy The Great, Sam Duckworth (Get Cape Wear Cape Fly), James Brown (Pulled Apart By Horses), Eckoes (FAC Beat Board member), ShaoDow (AIM Awards 2017 Hardest Working Artist Winner) and chaired by Rhian Jones (Music Business Worldwide).

4.10pm – Brexit and Navigating Global Trade in 2018 and Beyond (UPSTAIRS HALL)
How is Brexit likely to affect British music companies and artists, and what does the picture look like for global trade in 2018 and beyond? With speakers Hillary Benn MP, Rosie Millard (Creative Industries Federation), Nigel Adams MP, Kevin Brennan MP and chair Michael Dugher (UK Music).

4.10pm – A&R in the Digital Age (DOWNSTAIRS HALL)
In the age of streaming, how do independent labels approach A&R and artist development? Where do A&Rs find acts to sign in 2018, and what does a typical deal look like? Speakers include: Vidhi Ghandi (Ninja Tune), Daniel Miller (Mute), Darius Van Arman (Secretly Group), Achal Dhillon (Killing Moon), Jane Third [PIAS] and Will Headlam-Wells (Believe). Chaired by Tim Ingham (Music Business Worldwide).

5pm – Close

AFTERPARTY – OMEARA – 5.30 – 7.30pm
There will be an exclusive afterparty for Indie-Con delegates at new nearby music venue Omeara. All delegates will receive one complimentary drink from AIM (whilst stocks last).


Breakout sessions will run parallel to the main sessions and have limited spaces, so are restricted to 1 person per labelThese must be pre booked.

To RSVP for a break-out session email callum@musicindie.com, with the session title as the email subject, confirming the name of your attendee. We will randomly select attendees closer to the time and confirm whether you have been successful. Session descriptions are at the bottom of this email. Please consider timings of the main sessions to avoid clashes.

10 – 10.35am – Radio Plugging Session

Radio X’s John Kennedy and BBC 6 Music’s Jon Hillcock will take part in a 35-minute plugging session with Indie-Con attendees. With headphones at the ready each DJ will take a selection of speed meetings with attending labels. Play them a track, talk about your sound, get tips, advice, insight and opinion from two professional DJ who know the ins and outs of radio.

10.50 – 11.40am – Top Tips for running a successful crowd funding campaigns

Luke Arthur will guide you through the simple steps to set up a PledgeMusic direct-to-fan crowdfunding campaign. Whether you are looking to record a new single, EP or album, sell tour tickets and merchandise, make a video or anything else, PledgeMusic can help. We will explore ways to help grow and maximise your fan-base and explain exactly how PledgeMusic can provide you with a platform on which to launch, build and develop your musical career.

PledgeMusic currently launches around 1200 successful new projects and releases each year and you can easily be one of these!

12 – 12.40pm – Merchandise: Thinking outside the badge

In this 40 minute workshop Awesome Merchandise will help you to think about merch as more than just a money maker – unshackling it from your store and unlocking its power to create collaborations and community, as well as a source of revenue.

With over 12 years experience and 600+ products made in-house, Awesome Merchandise have produced an enormous amount of custom merch for an ever-growing global community; helping everyone from start-up bands and record labels, to music festivals and touring talent – turning their designs into, well… Awesome Merch!

 2.15 – 2.50pm – A&R Surgery

Vidhi Gandhi (Ninja Tune), Will Headlam Wells (Believe), Ach Dhillon (Killing Moon) and Abbie McCarthy (BBC Introducing) will carry out one-on–one A&R meetings with a selection of Indie-Con attendees. Run your queries, tracks and campaign plans past our experts and receive useful, practical advice from these A&R professionals.

3.25 – 4pm – Meet the Speakers – Accessing the Australian Market

Following ‘Accessing the Australian & New Zealand Markets’ you can meet a selection of our speakers to discuss your queries on these territories, directly with the experts. Find out first-hand what the opportunities and barriers are to these lucrative markets.

Participants: Dylan Pellett (Independent Music New Zealand), Ellen Kirk (Barely Dressed Records), Stu Watters (AIR/Big Sound), Dan Nevin (industry consultant), Matthew Rogers (Unified Music Group).


Open to both AIM members and non-members, Indie-Con will run all day on Thursday 8th February 2018, with lunch and refreshments provided to delegates.

Tickets are available now! All tickets are inclusive of VAT and include lunch.

AIM member – £75
Non-members – £162

Discounts available for students, start-ups and members of affiliated industry organisations.


About our Sponsor


DMS Vinyl are an independent crew of musicians and creatives who specialise in the manufacture of vinyl records, discs and custom packaging. UK based since 2004 but globally active, DMS are renowned for their next level customer service, competitive pricing and lead times. Their experienced team are fuelled by the passions of the independent sector, working hard both in and out of the office to make a lasting difference to their local music scene. As the only major supplier of pressed records in the Southwest, DMS have a rich history of supporting creative community ventures, educational projects, grassroots music venues and emerging artists and labels.

DMS are proud to celebrate strong ties with organisations such as AIM with regular sponsorship of key events like the AIM Awards, recognising those in the music industry who also work tirelessly to drive positive change for future generations.


9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
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Glaziers Hall
9 Montague Close
London, SE1 9DD
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